A broken-down, middle-aged country singer gets a new wife, reaches out to his long-lost daughter, and tries to put his troubled life back together.

Director:

Bruce Beresford

Writer:

Horton Foote
Won 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Duvall ... Mac Sledge
Tess Harper ... Rosa Lee
Betty Buckley ... Dixie
Wilford Brimley ... Harry
Ellen Barkin ... Sue Anne
Allan Hubbard ... Sonny
Lenny von Dohlen ... Robert (as Lenny Von Dohlen)
Paul Gleason ... Reporter
Michael Crabtree ... Lewis Menefee
Norman Bennett ... Reverend Hotchkiss
Andrew Scott Hollon Andrew Scott Hollon ... Larue
Rick Murray Rick Murray ... Jake - Slater Mill Boys Member
Stephen Funchess Stephen Funchess ... Bertie - Slater Mill Boys Member
Glen Fleming Glen Fleming ... Steve - Slater Mill Boys Member
James Aaron James Aaron ... Henry - Slater Mill Boys Member
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Storyline

Alchoholic former country singer Mac Sledge makes friends with a young widow and her son. The friendship enables him to find inspiration to resume his career. Written by Stefan Halldorsson <ms@vortex.is>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Robert Duvall is Mac Sledge, His fight for respect was just beginning. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tess Harper was considered to be a big possibility to be nominated in either the Best Actress or Best Actress in a Supporting Role categories for the Academy Award, but in the end, Harper was not nominated in either category. But Harper did receive a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture. Harper received a Best Actress in a Supporting Role nomination for Crimes of the Heart (1986), directed by Bruce Beresford. See more »

Goofs

In the final scenes, Sonny is shown with empty farmland behind him, then after a cut to a wider shot, suddenly the gas station and motel are behind him. See more »

Quotes

Mac Sledge: [to Rosa Lee] I don't know why I wandered out to this part of Texas drunk, and you took me in and pitied me and helped me to straighten out, marry me. Why? Why did that happen? Is there a reason that happened? And Sonny's daddy died in the war, my daughter killed in an automobile accident. Why? See, I don't trust happiness. I never did, I never will.
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Soundtracks

If You'll Hold the Ladder (I'll Climb to the Top)
Written by Buzz Rabin & Sara Busby (as Sara B.)
Sung by Robert Duvall
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User Reviews

 
The power of simplicity.
8 November 2001 | by jckruizeSee all my reviews

To all aspiring screenwriters: this is how to do it. Horton Foote eschews all of the phony and melodramatic plot devices Hollywood is so fond of, and concentrates instead on telling his tale as truly and simply as possible. In complete synch with him are his collaborators, director Bruce Beresford and star Robert Duvall. There's not a false gesture, extraneous word of dialogue, or wasted camera move. Just people who seem real, who strive to reach out to others, who want love and want to give it, but sometimes don't know how. There are quiet, subtle moments in this movie that squeeze the heart. Don't pass this one by.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 March 1983 (Canada) See more »

Also Known As:

Tender Mercies See more »

Filming Locations:

Arlington, Texas, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$46,977, 6 March 1983

Gross USA:

$8,443,124

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,443,124
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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